Dean River Debacle

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by brat, Aug 8, 2013.

  1. Jumbo Member

    Posts: 125
    Rural Western Wa, USA.
    Ratings: +9 / 0
    This same issue (commercial bycatch impact) is an issue every year on the Dean and has been for some time (at least since 1999). I send a letter every year.

    Agree that current management is aimed at a very different result than any of us would like to see.
  2. ralfish Active Member

    Posts: 291
    B.C.
    Ratings: +34 / 0
    The significant difference this year is the near total collapse of the Skeena sockeye fishery. With extreme conservation measures now in effect , meaning even FN food and ceremonial fisheries aren't taking place on the Skeena. So the North Coast commercials have moved down the coast to the Dean channel etc to par take in the low $ value chum and pink fisheries. 130 boats now out there and the last time I looked it was over 2 dozen openings. In the past when "weedline" requirements were in place it simply meant no one fished as the commercials did't drop the money on two sets of nets. Now the North Coast fleet is concentrating on the areas in Area 8 that dont have the weed-line requirement, and the Dean and Kimsquit steelhead are getting hammered. Badly...again.
  3. Jumbo Member

    Posts: 125
    Rural Western Wa, USA.
    Ratings: +9 / 0
    thanks for the add'l intel.
    this world is getting so f*cked.
  4. bennysbuddy the sultan of swing

    Posts: 2,262
    m-ville
    Ratings: +674 / 0
    When I gillneted in S.E. alaska . we all fished with a weed line and very seldon caught a steelhead. Every steelhead I ever caught in P.S in a gillnet was in the top 5 meshes no matter how deep of water I was fishing, Even then we rarely caught them because our season was generaly over by the end of october before the steelhead run entered the sound & most early steelhead are hatchery fish & will pass right thru a 6 inch mesh net.
  5. KerryS Ignored Member

    Posts: 6,699
    Sedro Woolley, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +1,744 / 0
    Close
    Close to 14 years gillnetting the Salish Sea (we called it Puget Sound back then) I can count on one hand the number of steelhead I netted; zero.
  6. PT Physhicist

    Posts: 3,544
    Edmonds, WA
    Ratings: +713 / 2
    Way back in the 80's a neighbor gave us a couple by-catch steelhead. 42 and 44" long. Not the big shouldered bruisers you'd catch in the spring PS rivers. Long and lean with enormous square tails.
  7. ralfish Active Member

    Posts: 291
    B.C.
    Ratings: +34 / 0
    [IMG][IMG]

    Both are Dean fish, both have scars from net encounters..
  8. _WW_ Fishes with Wolves

    Posts: 1,903
    Skagit River
    Ratings: +643 / 0
    The fish on the Dean that are getting hammered are summer runs - and show up way before October.
  9. BDD Active Member

    Posts: 2,226
    Ellensburg, WA
    Ratings: +214 / 2
    As a seiner in SE AK during the 90s, we caught steelhead quite regularly. There was no market for them so most of the time they became take-home fish. We fished inside waters and did not intercept as many as those fishing outside; I heard stories that they caught a lot more. I imagine many of them were heading south to BC waters. Many of the purse-seined fish could be returned to the water unharmed, if such emphasis would be made by the AK and BC fish managers. Just like fly anglers, there are good, responsible, ethical commercial guys out that would do the right thing if taught.
    aplTyler likes this.
  10. Salmo_g Active Member

    Posts: 7,470
    Your City ,State
    Ratings: +1,610 / 0
    Headed up next week to try and collect some on site data. Will report back at the end of the month.

    Sg
    Chris DeLeone likes this.
  11. Chris DeLeone Active Member

    Posts: 526
    Monroe, WA
    Ratings: +90 / 0
    Have fun up there SG
  12. Salmo_g Active Member

    Posts: 7,470
    Your City ,State
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    Too much office work and too little field "work" makes Sg a dull boy. About done with that nonsense.

    Sg
  13. ralfish Active Member

    Posts: 291
    B.C.
    Ratings: +34 / 0
    Don't have your expectations too high, back to numbers of pre 2008....
  14. BDD Active Member

    Posts: 2,226
    Ellensburg, WA
    Ratings: +214 / 2
    Ral, is that because of lower adult returns due to productivity/survival or higher harvest rates, both, or too early to tell?
  15. ralfish Active Member

    Posts: 291
    B.C.
    Ratings: +34 / 0
    That is the question fisheries managers have been trying to answer for the last number of years. But there is one thing we can do that we do have control of.....
  16. Salmo_g Active Member

    Posts: 7,470
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    Ralfish,

    Are you suggesting you have control of DFO? I don't think they got that memo. I think DFO is a resource extraction administration agency, wherein conservation is an occasional by-product of insufficient harvest. Weedlines notwithstanding.

    Sg
  17. Chris Johnson Member: Native Fish Society

    Posts: 1,786
    Bellingham Wa.
    Ratings: +316 / 1

    The top fish has a net mark, the bottom fish was scarred by a seal or sea lion.
  18. golfman65 Guest

    Posts: 0
    Ratings: +5 / 0
    wasting your breath Ralf....

    sad...
  19. ralfish Active Member

    Posts: 291
    B.C.
    Ratings: +34 / 0
    Not a chance. The spacing is far to regular to be any animal....

    Salmo, we dont have control of DFO but we can hammer their heads into the ground and call out their BS along with the bs of the unenforced fisheries that operate out of compliance. Examples: http://www.steelheadsociety.org/new...-thousands-unwanted-salmon-are-killed-bycatch
  20. Salmo_g Active Member

    Posts: 7,470
    Your City ,State
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    Keep up the good fight.